Understanding the Hidden Calories of Alcohol

Sure, it's no great surprise that consuming too much alcohol can be detrimental to your health. But did you consider how detrimental in is to your waistline? When was the last time you really considered the amount of calories you are consuming after your crispy cold beer, robust red wine that perfectly compliments your pasta, or evening cocktail- martini anyone? Even if you aren't over indulging in alcohol, the calories and how the body processes it, tend to add up.

What Are You Putting into Your Body?

As we age, our bodies struggle to process sugar and there is a significant amount of sugar in most alcoholic beverages. Have you noticed it's been harder to lose weight? Are you seeing a tummy that was not there before? Let's look at some numbers. Did you know that three cans of beer has the same amount of calories as a sandwich? A glass of wine has the same amount of calories as four cookies?

The main issue is that calories from alcohol are known as "empty calories." Therefore, these calories have no nutritional value. Consuming alcohol also reduces the amount of fat your body will burn for energy. Take a look at what you may be putting into your body:

  • 12 ounces of beer — 153 calories
  • 1.5 ounces of vodka — 97 calories
  • 5 ounces of red wine — 125 calories
  • 5 ounces of white wine — 121 calories
  • 6 ounces of Mojito — 143 calories
  • 9 ounces of Pina Colada — 490 calories

How do the numbers add up? Consider this: if you go out with your friends one night and drink five regular beers, you will have consumed 765 calories. If you consume five Pina Coladas, you will have put 2,450 empty calories into your body. Drinking five classes of wine in one sitting will result in the caloric intake of 625 calories (not including your tasty dinner).

Are You Drinking Responsibly?

If you're at least 21 years old, then there is nothing wrong with consuming alcohol — as long as you drink responsibly. Don’t overindulge and never drink and drive. The problem with abusing alcohol is that most people who drink too much -- can make a habit of it. When you abuse alcohol repeatedly, you plant seeds for a variety of problems and consequences which could negatively affect your health and life. Before you make the decision to drink, know and honor your limits.

Understanding the Hidden Calories of Alcohol